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March 19, 2009

Orioles: Simon steps up

No wonder the Orioles were so intent on getting pitcher Alfredo Simon's work visa issues straightened out. Simon pitched four scoreless innings against the Washington Nationals today and retired the first 11 batters he faced before giving up the only hit he surrendered in a very impressive outing. He also struck out three.

Normally, it would be ill-advised to read to much into one spring appearance, but it has gotten to the point where the Orioles can't afford to be choosy when somebody makes a move in the right direction.

The regular season rotation remains so uncertain that there are any number of combinations that you could put together and have a chance to be right. Simon wasn't on anybody's list a month ago, but that was before Brad Hennessey and John Parrish quickly fell out of consideration and Rich Hill needed several weeks to get healthy enough to compete for one of the three open slots.

Adam Eaton, Brad Bergesen, Rich Hill, Danys Baez, Brian Bass and Hayden Penn all are still viable, with Simon suddenly looking like he wants to crash this party.

Posted by Peter Schmuck at 2:03 PM | | Comments (23)
Categories: Just baseball
        

Comments

Pete,

Regarding the starting rotation, let's scrap the NCAA pools and start one for the starting rotation for the O's. I'm in (although this is not an endorsement for gambling!).

Pete,
Before this Spring Training started Kranitz suggested that he had a mystery starter in mind who might surprise people, and no one was talking about at the time. You think it might be Simon? He's had more than a few teams gamble on his upside. Supposedly he throws mid to high 90s heat but has yet to develop consistent secondary pitches.


...............................................................................................
Pete's reply: It's a fair question. Some people think it was Baez and some think it was Bergesen. I think Rick is playing with us a little bit.

Simon may be the sleeper Kranitz was referring to? Riemold is the real sleeper, how can he get ignored? Is it possible to push Pie to the AAA club and give Riemold a legitimate extended look?

.............................................................................................
Pete's reply: Possible, but not likely.

Okay, Simon now in the starting rotation and Guthrie is out. Trembley order is

1. Simon
2. Bass
3. Waters
4. Penn
5. Bergenson

Could Alfredo Simon be the "dark-horse" O's pitcher that Rick Kranitz has been alluding to all Spring for the rotation Pete?

This is good news, the O's sure do need some on the starting pitcher front. BTW Pete, is the O's on deck column ever going to be updated and why do they only post pictures of every third game or so...

I'm not surprised at Simon's performance given what I saw of him in his start against Tampa Bay last year. As I recall, he shut out TB for the first six innings which, given their lineup, is no easy feat. Wonder if Simon is Kranitz's mysterious "sleeper"...Oh, and sorry your guy, Perez, got a wee bit lit up, but nobody's perfect. I'm sure we'll see him on the MLB roster soon enough.


..............................................................................................
Pete's reply: Tough crowd. Wilfrido gives it up for the first time after being unhittable for, what, seven appearances?

If you go into the MLB.com TV game archives you can watch Simon pitch 8 impressive innings vs. Tampa on Sep 28, 2008. It was by far the best performance by an O pitcher in the last month of the season. Could he be Kranitz dark horse pitcher? He does remind one a little of Ferguson Jenkins in the similarity of his throwing motion and easy release of the ball.

............................................................................................
Pete's reply: Not ruling anybody out at this point.

What is the chance of Nolan Reimold making the team out of spring training? After hitting his 4th HR today, I think that he would be a perfect compliment to Pie in LF and Scott at DH. He could be used in a platoon situation similar to the way Lowenstein and Roenicke were used years ago. I believe this would be more productive than keeping Gomez.


.............................................................................................
Pete's reply: They would need about two more roster spots to keep Reimold.

Pete,

Can you pass along some info about this guy? Minor league free agent? What's his deal? Thanks.

.............................................................................................
Pete's reply: He's the guy, of course, who came in very late because of visa problems. Pitched that one big game against Tampa Bay last year. Might be a sleeper, but probably isn't the "sleeper" Kranitz was talking about at the start of camp.

I got to see Simon pitch his one game near the end of last year. He was terrific, just mowing them down and left with a lead in I think the 8th inning, which the bullpen promptly blew. I was hoping it wasn't a fluke and it's looking like it wasn't. He may be the real sleeper in camp this spring.

Due to needing a starter to step up and having a surplus of potentially good starters - why not trade Liz, Penn and Pauley to San Diego for Jake Peavy? He would be a #1, Guthrie 2, Uehara 3, likely Eaton 4, new person who wants a good job at 5. You strengthen the entire staff and get rid of a backlog of talent.


..............................................................................................
Pete's reply: Don't think the Padres are looking to pick up all the castoffs from another back-of-the-standings team, and Peavy has a no-trade and wouldn't come here.

This will be an unpopular comment. I'm disappointed at the Orioles for asking Jeremy Guthrie to leave Team USA in order to pitch one extra spring-training game.
The Orioles have been an internationally minded organization in the past. They're going to finish 5th this year anyway, so why not fully support the WBC? If Guthrie pitches Saturday for the O's instead of, say, next Wednesday, does that mean the Orioles have a better chance of finishing fourth?
Guthrie is a patriotic guy who has been enjoying representing his country. The Orioles have taken the joy away from the semifinals for him, making him feel guilty for wearing a USA jersey.
It's only four more days -- 1 spring-training start. Let him enjoy it. And show some love for the country, Orioles.

Simon tore it up in winter ball. This guy might be for real. I'd take him over Baez, Hendrickson or Eaton in a heartbeat.

Would love to find a way for Penn to make this team, but he clearly needs to show more in these last 3 weeks.

And don't listen to what Trembley tells the media. Rich Hill is a lock to make this team. He's too talented to turn away.

Would I be wrong to guess (with the current situation) Guthrie, Uehara. Eaton, Bass, and Simon? Seems like the most viable rotation right now.

Uh--That was the Nationals he piched against---right??

There's no room for Simon on the 25 man roster unless they do some serious cutting in other areas.They need a spot for Eaton and Moeller to begin with.Penn and Pauley will probably have to go for that alone.Of course there could be a couple people that go on the DL but that still doesn't validate Simon as a starter.Simon was basically ousted from the majors to the Mexican League. One start does not a starter make.

More Hardball took a look at some Baltimore Orioles players' last names like Bass, Pie, Ray, Waters, Spoone, Walker, and Hill and photoshopped appropriate baseball cards to their namesake. I wonder if Topps would market these?

Link: http://morehardball.blogspot.com/2009/03/whats-in-name_20.html

We appreciate the shout-out if you like it.

GOD HELP US.

Even a blind squirrel occasionally finds a nut. Simon is awful, as is all the collective dreck from which the O's are hoping to cull a starting rotation..Guthrie being the exception.

It's going to be a LONG wait until Matusz, Tillman & Arrietta arrive...sort of like A.P. Hill's last minute arrival at Sharpsburg...

Kranitz's sleeper may still be sleeping or may have woken up to a nightmare. Right now, I'm enjoying dreaming a bit about Simon.

I've even imagined that he has a way with lyrics, e.g., "I am a Roch, I am a blogger."

yAeco5 yrqynvxqkleg, [url=http://dxtqjnxjmcic.com/]dxtqjnxjmcic[/url], [link=http://keiczhqwngcj.com/]keiczhqwngcj[/link], http://fpkgkzxlbiak.com/

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Peter Schmuck wants you to know that, contrary to popular belief, he is more than just a bon vivant, raconteur and collector of blousy flowered shirts. He is a semi-respected journalist who has covered virtually every sport -- except luge, of course – and tackled issues that transcend the mere games people play. If that isn’t enough to qualify him to provide witty, wide-ranging commentary on the sports world ... and the rest of the world, for that matter ... he is an avid reader of history, biography and the classics, as well as a charming blowhard who pops off on both sports and politics on WBAL Radio. That means you can expect a little of everything in The Schmuck Stops Here, but the major focus will be keeping you up to the minute on Baltimore’s major sports teams and themes, whether it’s throwing up the Orioles lineup the minute it’s announced or updating you on the latest sprained ankle in Owings Mills. Oh, and by the way, that’s Mr. Schmuck to you.

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